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Extend Mac OS X's Screenshots

Mac OS X has a variety of built in screenshot methods. Here's a look at a few that offer more versatility than the basic full-screen capture (Command-Shift-3):

• Press Command-Shift-4 and you'll get a crosshair cursor with which you can drag to select and capture a certain area of the screen.

• Press Command-Shift-4-Space to select the entire window that the cursor is over, clicking on the window will then capture it. The resulting screenshot will even get a nice drop shadow.

• Hold down the Space bar after dragging out a selection window to move your selection rectangle around on the screen.

• Hold down Shift after dragging out a selection to constrain the selection in either horizontal or vertical orientation, depending on the direction of your drag.

• Hold down Option after dragging out a selection to expand the selection window around a center point.

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HTMLbits: Following up on Free Placement

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In TidBITS-362, I wrote about how several upcoming HTML editors use tables or Java to offer free placement of objects. Several readers responded with comments about problems with the Web pages those editors are likely to produce, and with thoughts about where this trend may take us.

Bill Seitz <seitz@mail.medscape.com> noted:

Lots of pages on the Web look stupid to me because I set my default font to Palatino 12 instead of the tiny and ugly Times 12. Cascading Style Sheets offer some additional placement control without resorting to tables, but still target their features to publishers attempting exact control over the user's view. I sometimes think these people should just make a giant JPEG for each page and stop the pretense.

Brad Kemper <andrmahr@inreach.com> chimed in as well:

I think free placement is a disturbing trend, not because of the code it produces (I would like not to be concerned with code at all), but because fixed-width pages do not account for the specific needs of people who read text onscreen. Since the first Macs, text has automatically wrapped to fit the size of the window. Now, thanks to programs that create Web pages with items placed to exact pixel coordinates, we lose this capability. Perhaps it is because we are using a page paradigm instead of thinking of Web pages as windows or screens of information. We've taken a huge step backwards. We should take a hint from people who design interfaces for computer programs: good design for monitors is different from that for print.

Sajid Martin <slmartin@cruzio.com> worried about speed, commenting:

I think an important disadvantage could be that using tables to configure the entire page results in much longer page rendering times, and slows down scrolling in a browser. But, I think the trend to make coding - including scripting - unnecessary may be good in the long run for the end user.

 

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